Making beads is inexpensive. There is quite a bit of preparation required, but the versatility of the craft makes it well worth the effort. The students will need to be patient as there will be 6 stages of preparation as they design, assemble and package their Mother's Day Gift Set.
Preparing the Materials and the Area
For students to be able to do justice to this project, they will need a working area and some storage space. Read through these recipes to make a list of the materials needed to create the beads.
How To Make Paper Beads is a blog about a no fuss way to make extremely cost effective beads. The blog, Making Beads With Salt Clay (found by scrolling up above the post), gives directions for beads that are more chunky and rustic. Clay items, on the other hand, are durable, but making and firing them is also quite time consuming. When reading the article How To Make Clay Beads, remember that you must allow more time than you would need for the other two.
Make sure you read the instructions thoroughly before choosing which medium you will use. How much work you can manage and the time required for process will greatly influence the quality of the project. Don't cut yourself short of time.
Designing the Gift Set
Decide on the look and feel you want. Do you want an old fashioned antique feel, something rustic, modern and flamboyant, or chic and elegant? Firm decisions about style need to be made at the designing stage so that the appropriate materials can be purchased. Shape and size will be influenced by the image you wish to portray. Sleek and stylish will most likely be assembled from slim and tiny beads, while a modern look will be more chunky and flamboyant and colourful.
Have the students draw a picture of the desired outcome. Make sure you encourage students to draw the connecting threads, clasps and hooks. Leave nothing to chance, especially if the students have not experienced a project like this before.
Ask them to bring a picture of their mother to school so that they can draw the jewelry draped around her neck and draw on her earrings. This will greatly influence the way they design the jewelry. It will confirm with confidence that this gift set will be just right for mother.
Making the Gift Set
Follow the recipes cited above. if you want to add spice and flair, make several types of beads and mix and match. Make sure that you are clear about how the beads will be strung together. Items that could be fashioned into sets are bracelets, necklaces, earrings, chokers and paper mache rings. Designed from matching beads, they will look stunning when packaged.
Packaging the Gift
If the class has plenty of time, the students could make an attractive paper mache box and line it with felt. Maybe they could decoupage photos of mother onto the lid. What a heart warming gift giving idea!
If time is scant, they could simply arrange the jewelry onto a card by punching holes through the board. They could then tie the pieces onto it in an attractive arrangement. By taping clear or lightly coloured cellophane over the arrangement, they would add a touch of class to a beautiful display.
Making the Card
Tying Ribbon Through Gift Cards gives other Mother's Day ideas and compliments this Mother's Day project. The ribbons would serve as one last chance to embellish the tender moment by fixing some more beads to the ribbons trailing from the cards.